In October, we welcomed our long-term press car, the 2024 BMW iX M60, into our fleet. The Phytonic Blue M-tuned iX arrived in Chicago to serve as our everyday driver for the next few months. Despite a hectic travel schedule, we managed to accumulate 1,000 miles on the car within just a few weeks. Our goal with this iX press car is to treat it like our own, using it for daily errands, family outings, road trips, and occasional fun weekend drives.
Of course, as an electric car, our testing approach differs slightly from that of traditional gasoline-powered vehicles.While with most sports cars, our focus is on the driving dynamics and performance, with electric vehicles, efficiency and charging take center stage. Having owned several BMW i3s over the past nine years, we’re well-versed in maximizing the efficiency and driving range of an electric BMW. The BMW iX M60 is no exception. This means driving at moderate speeds, using the air conditioning or heating sparingly, and pre-conditioning the battery whenever possible to optimize range.
1,000 Miles Update
What have I learned from my 1,000-mile journey with the 2024 BMW iX M60? Above all, it has reaffirmed my initial impression: the iX stands out as one of my preferred BMW models currently available. While its aesthetics may not be its strongest suit, it boasts an intelligent design. What do I mean by that? The dedicated EV-first platform, reminiscent of the i3, signals a vehicle where no compromises were made, granting engineers and designers ample creative freedom. This feeling is certainly palpable in the driving experience, but more on that shortly.
Additionally, the iX features one of the most impressive interiors in today’s BMW lineup. It exudes simplicity, some might label it as minimalistic, avoiding intrusive or overwhelming design and tech elements (despite the presence of a large curved display). The use of top-notch materials and trims further elevates the overall quality of the interior. So let’s dive in into some details.
2024 BMW iX M60
- Impressive Performance
- Interior Space
- Easy to maneuver in big cities
- No frunk
- No hitch for towing
- Front seats are not long enough
The 2024 BMW iX M60 weighs around 5,800 lbs which is certainly on the heavy side of things. The overall proportions are a similar to the X5’s: 195″ long vs. 193.8″, 77.4″ wide vs. 78.9″, and 66.8″ tall vs. 69.5″. So it’s a fairly big car, especially if you live in a congested city like Chicago. But when equipped with the Integral Active Steering, the turning radius of the iX is 21.4 feet vs. 38.1 feet in the X5. Compared to a BMW X5, the iX really feels like a forklift. Hence why it reminds me so much of the i3.
Also thanks to the rear axle steering, the maneuverability of the BMW iX is impressive in the city. Where I notice it most is in parking lots, doing U-turns and naturally on any tight roads. If you live in Chicago, then you know that the parking situations is not great. So you often have to squeeze in between cars at weird angles, but that’s mostly mitigated by the Integral Active Steering option. Of course, IAS also makes the iX handle better on the highway. You will notice that during quick maneuvering and lane changes.
Efficiency and Range
Now, let’s discuss efficiency and range. Most of the 1,000 miles were in ideal weather conditions, ranging from 60°F to 75°F. This meant I didn’t need to use the pre-conditioning mode frequently. The average consumption was 2.4 miles per kWh, providing a range of 252 miles. If I were primarily driving on the highway, I could achieve a range of 305 miles (based on 2.9 kWh per mile multiplied by the 105.2 kWh net battery capacity). Our 2024 BMW iX M60, equipped with 22-inch wheels, has an EPA-rated range of 274 miles.
Despite not having a home charger, I found numerous Electrify America chargers nearby, and surprisingly, they all functioned without any downtime. Despite hearing negative stories about the Electrify America network, I personally haven’t encountered any issues. My only wish is that they were rated at more than 150 kW, considering the iX’s DC Fast Charging capability goes up to 195 kW.
On the performance side, this 2024 BMW iX M60 is bonkers fast! BMW says 3.6 seconds to 60 mph, but I’m willing to bet a 3.3 – 3.4 seconds times. Do I need that power and acceleration? Likely not. The iX xDrive50 is already a very competent car, but since I have the M Performance, I decided to have some fun with it. Thanks to its low center of gravity and excellent balance, the iX M60 can provide an enjoyable driving experience without the bulkiness and body roll typical of larger SUVs.
The Highway Assistant
If there’s one package in the iX that I absolutely love and highly recommend, it’s the Driving Assistance Professional Package priced at $2,300. This package encompasses the Active Driving Assistant Pro, Highway Assistant, Parking Assistant Professional, Active Cruise Control, Active Lane Keeping Assistant with side collision, and Traffic Jam Assistant. As a 2024 model, this iX M60 is equipped with the enhanced Highway Assistant features (Level 2+), identical to those in the i7 and i5, allowing for hands-free driving up to 85 mph. I almost always engage it on the highway, enhancing the overall comfort and relaxation of the ride. It performs great, with only occasional challenges during nighttime when lane markings are hard to discern.
I wasn’t going to touch much on the Air Suspension, but it’s too great to ignore it. At times, the iX M60 feels like a 7 Series, despite having a stiffer suspension than on the iX xDrive50. It floats over the road and bumps, absorbing the shocks and delivering a very soft and comfortable ride. There isn’t much to add, it’s just great!
Lastly, the interior space is a standout feature for me. In comparison to my recently acquired i4, the absence of a transmission tunnel enhances the usability of the interior. This translates to ample space for three adults in the back with generous legroom. As a family car, the iX M60 suits my needs, reserving the 1M for the occasional mid-life crisis. I promptly installed two Clek car seats – one rear-facing and one front-facing for a toddler. Even with the car seats and the added snack bags and diaper bags that typically accompany family travels, there’s still plenty of room in the rear. There’s even enough space for a smaller adult to squeeze between the car seats if needed.
I have a saying: There is no such thing as the perfect car. Of course, that’s an arguable statement. But in my case, I have yet to find the perfect BMW. Many come close though. The BMW iX M60 comes with its own set of quirks, and the first one worth mentioning is related to the front seats. Standing at 6’2″, I find that the seat length is simply too short. It lacks sufficient thigh support, and unfortunately, there’s no option to extend them.
Strangely, considering the ample footwell space and the convenience provided by the flat-bottom steering for easy access and exit, it’s unclear why BMW opted for such short seats. Nevertheless, this seems like a straightforward issue to address, and hopefully, the upcoming facelift will bring about improvements in the seat design. Staying on the seats topic, there isn’t also enough side support, but that doesn’t bother me as much as the previous issue.
Next on the cons list – A Trailer Hitch. It’s a bit disappointing that the BMW iX doesn’t come with a trailer hitch. Placing a bike on top of the EV could significantly diminish the range by disrupting the car’s aerodynamics, so that’s not an option for me. It is offered though in other markets, so it’s likely a regulation thing for the US. Nonetheless, I wish the iX had it.
Finally, let’s talk about the frunk. I’m still puzzled as to why BMW chose to omit it. There’s ample space beneath that substantial hood, and creating a small storage compartment doesn’t seem overly complex. While not everyone may utilize it regularly – I myself rarely used the one in my i3, albeit it wasn’t waterproof or particularly spacious – it remains a desirable feature. It’s worth noting that Tesla owners often highlight the frunk as a positive selling point in comparison.
Winter is around the corner, and in Chicago, known for its lengthy and severe winters, we’ve already encountered our initial snowfall and freezing temperatures. Consequently, a decision looms ahead: should I switch to winter tires or stick with the performance rubber? Clearly, the wiser choice is the former, so I’ll be looking into that soon. Also, I plan to test the iX’s range with and without the precondition feature, examining its impact. Next, I’ll provide updates on efficiency during the winter months and share my experiences driving this large EV in snowy conditions.
Stay tuned for numerous updates, both here and on our social media and YouTube channels. As always, if you have suggestions for content, topics to cover, or feedback, feel free to leave them in the comments below!